Science Enabled by Specimen Data

Miller, E. F., Green, R. E., Balmford, A., Maisano Delser, P., Beyer, R., Somveille, M., … Manica, A. (2021). Bayesian Skyline Plots disagree with range size changes based on Species Distribution Models for Holarctic birds. Molecular Ecology. doi:10.1111/mec.16032 https://doi.org/10.1111/mec.16032

During the Quaternary, large climate oscillations impacted the distribution and demography of species globally. Two approaches have played a major role in reconstructing changes through time: Bayesian Skyline Plots (BSPs), which reconstruct population fluctuations based on genetic data, and Species …

Newbold, T., Hudson, L. N., Contu, S., Hill, S. L. L., Beck, J., Liu, Y., … Purvis, A. (2018). Widespread winners and narrow-ranged losers: Land use homogenizes biodiversity in local assemblages worldwide. PLOS Biology, 16(12), e2006841. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.2006841 https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pbio.2006841

Human use of the land (for agriculture and settlements) has a substantial negative effect on biodiversity globally. However, not all species are adversely affected by land use, and indeed, some benefit from the creation of novel habitat. Geographically rare species may be more negatively affected by…

Cooper, N., Bond, A. L., Davis, J. L., Portela Miguez, R., Tomsett, L., & Helgen, K. M. (2019). Sex biases in bird and mammal natural history collections. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 286(1913), 20192025. doi:10.1098/rspb.2019.2025 https://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2019.2025

Natural history specimens are widely used across ecology, evolutionary biology and conservation. Although biological sex may influence all of these areas, it is often overlooked in large-scale studies using museum specimens. If collections are biased towards one sex, studies may not be representativ…

Espinosa, C. C., Trigo, T. C., Tirelli, F. P., da Silva, L. G., Eizirik, E., Queirolo, D., … de Freitas, T. R. O. (2017). Geographic distribution modeling of the margay (Leopardus wiedii) and jaguarundi (Puma yagouaroundi): a comparative assessment. Journal of Mammalogy, 99(1), 252–262. doi:10.1093/jmammal/gyx152 https://doi.org/10.1093/jmammal/gyx152

The Neotropical region currently harbors 8 recognized species of small cats, including the margay (Leopardus wiedii) and jaguarundi (Puma yagouaroundi). These similar-sized species have broad geographic distributions and commonly occur in sympatry. We constructed species occurrence databases and use…

Li, X., Li, B., Wang, G., Zhan, X., & Holyoak, M. (2020). Deeply digging the interaction effect in multiple linear regressions using a fractional-power interaction term. MethodsX, 7, 101067. doi:10.1016/j.mex.2020.101067 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mex.2020.101067

In multiple regression Y ~ β0 + β1X1 + β2X2 + β3X1 X2 + ɛ., the interaction term is quantified as the product of X1 and X2. We developed fractional-power interaction regression (FPIR), using βX1M X2N as the interaction term. The rationale of FPIR is that the slopes of Y-X1 regression along the X2 gr…

Newbold, T., Oppenheimer, P., Etard, A., & Williams, J. J. (2020). Tropical and Mediterranean biodiversity is disproportionately sensitive to land-use and climate change. Nature Ecology & Evolution. doi:10.1038/s41559-020-01303-0 https://doi.org/10.1038/s41559-020-01303-0

Global biodiversity is undergoing rapid declines, driven in large part by changes to land use and climate. Global models help us to understand the consequences of environmental changes for biodiversity, but tend to neglect important geographical variation in the sensitivity of biodiversity to these …

Cardador, L., & Blackburn, T. M. (2020). A global assessment of human influence on niche shifts and risk predictions of bird invasions. Global Ecology and Biogeography. doi:10.1111/geb.13166 https://doi.org/10.1111/geb.13166

Aim: Estimating the strength of niche conservatism is key for predictions of invasion risk. Most studies consider only the climatic niche, but other factors, such as human disturbance, also shape niches. Whether occupation of human habitats in the alien range depends on the native tolerances of spec…

Rotenberry, J. T., & Balasubramaniam, P. (2020). Connecting species’ geographical distributions to environmental variables: range maps versus observed points of occurrence. Ecography. doi:10.1111/ecog.04871 https://doi.org/10.1111/ecog.04871

Connecting the geographical occurrence of a species with underlying environmental variables is fundamental for many analyses of life history evolution and for modeling species distributions for both basic and practical ends. However, raw distributional information comes principally in two forms: poi…

Prieto-Torres, D. A., Lira-Noriega, A., & Navarro-Sigüenza, A. G. (2020). Climate change promotes species loss and uneven modification of richness patterns in the avifauna associated to Neotropical seasonally dry forests. Perspectives in Ecology and Conservation. doi:10.1016/j.pecon.2020.01.002 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pecon.2020.01.002

We assessed the effects of global climate change as a driver of spatio-temporal biodiversity patterns in bird assemblages associated to Neotropical seasonally dry forests (NSDF). For this, we estimated the geographic distribution of 719 bird species under current and future climate (2050 and 2070) p…

Zink, R. M., Botero-Cañola, S., Martinez, H., & Herzberg, K. M. (2020). Niche modeling reveals life history shifts in birds at La Brea over the last twenty millennia. PLOS ONE, 15(1), e0227361. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0227361 https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0227361

A species presence at a particular site can change over time, resulting in temporally dynamic species pools. Ecological niche models provide estimates of species presence at different time intervals. The avifauna of La Brea includes approximately 120 species dating to approximately 15,000 years ago.…